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Social inequalities, gender and lifelong learning A feminist, sociological review of work, family and education

Social inequalities, gender and lifelong learning A feminist, sociological review of work, family... Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between social and gender inequalities and how they have been studied over the last 30 years. What have we learned, as academic sociologists in higher education, about how the socio‐cultural context, policies and global social transformations in the UK, and North America influence social stratification? The key focus is on how gender differences influence forms of social stratification through complex relations between “work”, family and education. Design/methodology/approach – The paper reflects on changing research methodologies from their origins in sociology and second wave feminism by addressing three international studies about the troubled question of mothers’ work. All three studies reflexively address the question of changing knowledge and methodologies about social inequality or stratification. Findings – The paper finds that while all three studies are from a feminist perspective and consider methodologies in the light of the so‐called “neo‐liberal project” and the knowledge economy, they come to rather divergent conclusions. The three studies illustrate the complexities of knowledge and methodologies about social stratification and gender inequalities. Originality/value – The paper demonstrates how alternative methods contribute to our knowledge and the rich diversity of sociological work as an academic practice. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy Emerald Publishing

Social inequalities, gender and lifelong learning A feminist, sociological review of work, family and education

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0144-333X
DOI
10.1108/01443330810890673
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between social and gender inequalities and how they have been studied over the last 30 years. What have we learned, as academic sociologists in higher education, about how the socio‐cultural context, policies and global social transformations in the UK, and North America influence social stratification? The key focus is on how gender differences influence forms of social stratification through complex relations between “work”, family and education. Design/methodology/approach – The paper reflects on changing research methodologies from their origins in sociology and second wave feminism by addressing three international studies about the troubled question of mothers’ work. All three studies reflexively address the question of changing knowledge and methodologies about social inequality or stratification. Findings – The paper finds that while all three studies are from a feminist perspective and consider methodologies in the light of the so‐called “neo‐liberal project” and the knowledge economy, they come to rather divergent conclusions. The three studies illustrate the complexities of knowledge and methodologies about social stratification and gender inequalities. Originality/value – The paper demonstrates how alternative methods contribute to our knowledge and the rich diversity of sociological work as an academic practice.

Journal

International Journal of Sociology and Social PolicyEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 25, 2008

Keywords: Gender; Social stratification; Family; Education; Parents; Feminism

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